KTSF_Main990x250_GreatFamily_Jul13

Great Family:Senior Health Care Insurance

Great Family: Senior Health Care Insurance
Some Chinese seniors find discussions of senior health care insurance very complicated and confusing because there are so many different plans and options to choose. The situation is even worse when English is not their first language, and it might become very difficult for them if they’re trying to understand how senior health care insurance works. That is why “Great Family” decided to bring this topic to the table today. Let’s take a closer look at how it works.

Starting in January 2014, the Coordinated Care Initiative (CCI) will be implemented in eight counties in California; three Bay Area counties, Alameda, San Mateo, and Santa Clara, will participate in this program. This program was designed to better serve the state’s low-income seniors and those with disabilities. Here are some of the highlights of this program:

• MediCal and Medicare will be all combined under the umbrella of the CCI program. People are no longer required to have many different insurance cards. Instead, CCI will combine MediCal, Medicare, and the Long-Term Care and Prescription plan together in one place. One card will cover all.

• Those people who are qualified to join the program will not need to take any action. They will receive letters from the government agency handling the program, stating that they are automatically covered.

• Participants are free to stay or leave the program at any time. No laws or regulations require people to remain in this program; they can always go back to the original MediCal or Medicare insurance, if they want to do so.

This episode of “Great Family” features health care insurance expert, Robert Ju and Stella Tam from the Health Plan of San Mateo. Here are some tips provided by our two guests:

Robert : “When you’re trying to learn more about Senior Health Care Insurance, never rely on any of the sales or promotional materials on the market. Instead, try to ask for help directly from non-profit organizations. This will be the faster way to get the most accurate information.”

Stella : “Don’t just listen to somebody else saying that this plan is good, that plan is not good… etc. Do your own research; try to get as much information as possible, and then make your own decisions that fulfill what you need.”


Great Family is a multi-media initiative which highlights family related health and social issues affecting the Asian-American community. Each month, a Great Family tip is delivered via 30-second broadcast vignettes featuring experts in the fields of medicine, nutrition, education, business, etc. The complete, long form version of each expert interview is made available for streaming on greatfamily.ktsf.com and is broadcast on the last Sunday of each month at 10:30pm on KTSF-TV.